Steady housing supply needed to resolve affordability issue

Steady housing supply needed to resolve affordability issue

KUALA LUMPUR, September 23 — A steady supply of housing at affordable prices and measures to improve the efficacy of the construction industry to deliver them are needed to resolve the property affordability issue.

Malaysian Economic Association’s (MEA) President, Tan Sri Mohd Sheriff Mohd Kassim said the stakeholders needed to appreciate the problems and find ways to resolve them.

“If we don’t deal with the problems now, they will get bigger,” he told Bernama on the sidelines of a forum titled “Does greater prosperity come with less housing affordability” here today.

Organised by MEA, the forum was aimed at achieving a degree of convergence on what needed to be done to resolve the property affordability issue.

Mohd Sheriff said the forum was prompted by a research on affordable housing conducted by the Khazanah Research Institute (KRI).

KRI Managing Director Datuk Charon Mokhzani said if the issue is not resolved, property prices would keep rising across the country as what is happening in the capital and Penang.

“Industry players should start looking for better ways of building houses, including using construction technology,” he said.

National Housing Department director Murali Jayabalan hoped the government would provide an allocation in the 2016 Budget to build 10,000 more affordable houses on top of the 30,000 units approved nationwide last year.

“The houses will be priced between RM45,000 and RM300,000,” he said.

He said the government would come out with a paper on the industrialised building system initiative and set up a housing databank to address the affordable housing issue.